Triggering Emails For Retention

A shocking number of people say that companies could have made more of an effort than they actually did to keep their custom. According to a recent research study by Accenture, eighty-five per cent of those they spoke to agreed that their loyalty could have been retained if a company had acted in some way to try and keep hold of them.

Given that it costs six to seven times more to acquire a new customer than to keep hold of an existing one, it seems crazy that businesses aren’t using every channel they possibly can (including email) to retain the customers they already have.

How can email help with your retention efforts?
Paul Stamatiou, Experience Designer on the Growth Team at Twitter says that a company should think about sending automatically triggered user retention emails when a user doesn’t do something.

Triggers would of course vary from business to business, but here are a few examples:

·         Send an email when: someone doesn’t complete a purchase at the checkout
·         Send an email when: someone doesn’t authenticate their account
·          Send an email when: someone doesn’t upgrade

Get the idea?

My colleague received a great retention email from Dropbox earlier this week. She didn’t even know that I was writing this post but we’re in the habit of sharing quirky, innovative and well-designed emails regularly with each other and I really liked this one so I’m going to share it with you.

For those who don’t use the service, I’ll explain what Dropbox is. In a nutshell, Dropbox is a web-based file hosting service that lets people save their documents, photos, etc. to the cloud so they can access them from any online device.dropbox

My colleague signed up to Dropbox one afternoon last week but hadn’t yet taken the time to install it onto her computer.

Dropbox operates under a freemium business model. This means that people can get started for free, but pay for more space as they want to host more files.

The only way Dropbox makes money is when someone increases their storage space. They need to make people really fall in love with their service to encourage them to opt for one of their billed packages. Dropbox know that if someone isn’t using their free version, there is little or no chance that they’ll ever purchase the paid for version. This is why they need to put maximum effort into encouraging both downloads, and usage and they’re harnessing the power of email to do just that.


We love this email because….

  •     It’s easy to read and digest.
  •     It’s on brand – simple, quirky and clean. Dropbox have built their brand on the idea of simplicity and this email echoes that well.
  •     They make it very easy for customers to learn more about their service by directing them to their video tour.  As we already know, video is a very powerful communications tool.
  • They explain the benefits of their service concisely; they don’t need to go into too much detail as they know the recipient probably did their research before signing up in the first place.
  •     The call to action is the focus of the creative. Once again, it’s clean and simple and to the point.
  •     They’ve used a cute computer cartoon with a sad face, now if that doesn’t make you want to download I’m not quite sure what will! 🙂

Have you used email to try and keep hold of customers? What was your approach? Let us know in the comments box below! I always read and respond to comments.

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